Paraplegic Gear/Tools of the Month: Wheels and Tyres

Reading time: 4 minutes

Today’s Gear: Tire pump, tire changing, tire technology!

There are probably more tools and gear that I’ll discover over time, but here are a few great tools and some gear that you can start implementing now.

Tire Pump

Starting off with the issues we face in the tire pumping department. It’s not easy to find a pump to use on wheelchair tires if you’re doing it yourself.
Problems:
You’ll most likely have to get out of your chair, which isn’t always easy to do.
Once you get out of your chair and ready to start pumping up your tires, then comes the issue with actually pumping them up.
If you’re not wicked strong or maybe you have trouble using your arms, it’s difficult to actually pump up the tires. I keep my tires pumped up at around 100PSI and it takes some energy to get up to that number.
If you do find a tire pump that’s easy to use, it probably isn’t travel friendly.
You can see my first tire pump here and the difficulty that comes with it

I found a few variations of tire pumps, some are manual, some aren’t. Some are travel friendly, some aren’t.

1.
If you’re tech forward and want a travel friendly and simple tire pump, this right here is what you need: Oasser Air Compressor Portable Mini Air Inflator Hand Held Tire Pump (left)

If you’re a stay at home type of person, then the version on the right might better suit you:
TEROMAS Tire Inflator Air Compressor

2.
If you’re skeptical about the electric pump but still want something that you can use without having to break a sweat, then you’ll be best using this sexy tool: Mini Bike Pump with CO2 Inflator

This even comes with a mounting set that, depending on your chair, you could attach to your chair!

3.
If you still want to pump your wheels by hand, you’d be defeating the purpose of me showing you cool gear and tools that you can use to mitigate this problem. However, if you must, this hand pump is still a lot more portable than the first tire pump that I bought and it comes with a repair kit!

Vibrelli Mini Bike Pump & Glueless Puncture Repair Kit

Tire changing

Now that we solved the issues that arise from having to pump up our tires, whether at home or traveling.
Problem:
What are we to do if the tire is beyond deflated and actually needs to be changed or patched? It’s hard to take off the wheel and replace the tube, especially if you have limited hand function or aren’t at home.
What about decreasing the chance of having to change the tube?
This right here is a 2-in-1 gear. Not only is it useful as a tire repair kit, but it doubles as extra storage space!

1.
The WOTOW Bike Tyre Repair Kit not only has the tools needed for on the go tire repair, you can fix other small nuances with the multi-tool provided. If you have an inflated seat cushion, the repair kit can also work to patch any holes you might get.
If you dont really need the tools – maybe you already have them – then the bag itself can be useful and it’s up to your imagination as to where you can attach the bag.

2.
If you want to minimise the chance of getting a flat tire, then you can get the Slime Self-Sealing Smart Tube, of course, the size will differ and you’ll need to check your tires to see what size tube will fit your wheels.

3.
If you’d like to have a more advanced tire repair kit that will make the tedious and frustrating process of replacing a tire tube easier, there aren’t many options.

Typically, a tyre repair kit will come with flimsy plastic tools that have bent and broken when I used them.

A more permanent tool to add to your bag would be the Tragoods Premium Bicycle Tire Lever

As a little bonus, if you’re only interested in the bag for the purpose of storage, here are my top two favorites:
Aduro Sport Bicycle Bike Storage Bag
Rhinowalk Bike Bag

Tire Technology

This is something that I recently stumbled upon and I see huge potential for it, not only in my arsenal of awesome, but in the homes of many people who are in wheelchairs and love to travel and explore against the odds.

The problem we solve here is that if you live in an area known to get a surplus of snow and you plan on going on a trail in the outback the following month, then you’ll have to carry around tyres and a kit along with a resentment for having to change your bike tyres so much.

The solution is presented here and best speaks for itself:

The ReTyre Modular Tyre System.

It comes in at a reasonable price considering the benefits.

As a hearty conclusion to this months gear/tools, you’re mind might be busy at work with new ideas and or excitement to use these products to improve your life. It’s worth remembering that wheelchairs are, to some degree, a bike that just got bent and twisted. A lot of bike tools work well for wheelchairs and our tires are basically bike tires with a bar on the side. I look around the cycling community and often adopt some of what they have.

If you haven’t ventured into the possibilities, these products above are just the beginning of how those of us in wheelchairs can be creative by using what exists in new and great ways.


PS, I have plenty of gear/tools to write about, I might post more than just one a month, but we’ll see about that.

In case you’re eager for more cool gear or tools that I’ve uncovered during my internet archaeology, here’s something that you’ll see featured in a future post that’ll be talking about EDC:
Beer Bike Keychain

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